I read most of a book recently. The author recommended making time for what’s important. Clearly, he posited, if x was something worth fighting for, x should be top priority.
May I be sexist for minute, and say what a guy thing that was to advise?
His quote is just the thing my well-meaning husband would say. My husband would say it while looking up from his phone, while resting on the bed, while also expounding on the virtues of a regular bedtime -while I fold his underwear on the floor.
That was not one of those scenarios I made up to be literary, either.
I love my husband, and he does a lot for our family. Every day, he wins enough bread that (with good financial management) I can housekeep and childraise. But he’s clueless.
In order for a mother to “make time,” someone else needs to take over her responsibilities while she’s gone. Otherwise, the careening camper trailer of children will crash. And, mom will have to clean up THAT mess.
Household Fallout like that is another reason why I avoid Me Time. Hours of mitigating tantrums, putting the house to rights, and calming emotional stress is not worth the small break, especially if I know such surprises await me upon my return.
Whenever I take time to do anything, I feel I have taken it from somewhere else. I’m robbing Peter to pay Paul. Or, I’m skipping reading time with Peter to wash Paul’s soccer uniform. I’ve forgotten the birthday party Peter was invited to so Paul (and Paul’s siblings) could eat dinner.
I rob Peter, Paul, and Mary to pay for …what? A massage? A trip to the bathroom unaccompanied?
Does this mean the most important thing is the mothering? It does. But, if years of mothering slowly wears us down to brittle, bitter remains of happy people, is it really the most important?